Friday, February 3, 2012


Posted by Melanie at Friday, February 03, 2012

My January Rotation was Drug Information (DI) at Michigan House. I really had a great time on this rotation and could see it as a potential career in the future.

The team of pharmacists that work at DI are absolutely amazing. Let me tell you a little about what a DI rotation at the Michigan House was like:

1 -- Phone Shift
The pharmacists take shifts working the phone line. Questions on your shift can come via telephone call, voicemail, fax, or email. When you receive a telephone call you want to make sure that you really delve deep into the question to find out all the pertinent information while you have the person on the phone. For example, if someone calls and asks you, "What is the dose of Magonate?" what would be the next step (HINT::: I just said it!) --- delve deeper!!

Who are you trying to treat? What are you treating? Is she on any other medications (including herbals, OTCs)? What is her magnesium level and what is her goal? What dose are you currently giving her?

From this conversation you learn that the patient is a 7 year old girl (DON'T FORGET TO ASK HEIGHT AND WEIGHT SO YOU CAN PROVIDE A DOSE REC!) who is deficient in magnesium with a level of 1.2 and a goal of 2 and she has been getting Magonate at a certain dose but the practioner is afraid she might be giving her too much.

Now you have a much different picture in your mind than if you had been told you have a 35 year old male who is around the lower limit of normal and would like to take a magnesium supplement.

At DI, you find out what the time sensitivity on the question is and get a callback number or email and then go and look up the information and then call the person back with the answer. Then you have to log the question and answer so if anyone else gets a similar question, they can refer to yours and see what you came up with.

2 -- 10:00 AM Meeting
At this meeting, all the pharmacists (and students) meet to discuss the previous day's questions. This helps the pharmacists become aware of the questions that were asked, and it also gives an opportunity to bounce ideas off of each other. Like many other times in pharmacy, there isn't always ONE correct answer but multiple acceptable answers. This meeting allows the pharmacists to share how they might have answered the question differently.... this is especially the case for some ethical questions that arise (IE - A parent calls because he found pills in his 17 year old daughter's room --- do you identify the pills for him?).

During these meetings, the students also learn about different references that are available to find certain types of information. Thing of a short EBM course review.

Students on the DI rotation also complete two MedWatch forms, which is reporting adverse events to the FDA. They also complete a P&T monograph and give a presentation on that to the pharmacists. In addition, students write an article for the UM Newsletter.

No comments: